For Those of You Interested in the Bear Stearns' Debacle
In terms of FAR interests, I have greater interests (and ability) to teach Contracts or Civ Pro (and probably more Contracts), but I really loved Corporations in law school. Yes, me, who was That Annoyingly Sanctimonious Progressive Girl in law school. I hate the idea that progressive/public interest/social justice types can't be, or are anomalous when, they are interested in corporate law. It's interesting! And all this stuff does dovetail (eventually) with my clear interest in employment law.
Of course, my main focus is employment discrimination law, but there's all sorts of interesting corporate law issues now that I want to study ED from an organizational perspective. I really should learn more about stocks so that I can analyze the risk-taking behavior of employees who do not diversify their 401(K) portfolios from a micro-organizational perspective. Clearly, they are totally screwed when the company tanks when it discharges its fiduciary duty (i.e., royally fucks up) or is just plain cooking the books (Enron, need I say more). Not that every bit of work I do must have an anti-discrimination law or social justice angle, but yes, there are such issues when you deal with big organizations and their workers and what it means for securities law. Of course, I know nothing about securities law. Maybe I should learn more. Hmm, next year. Man, I hope someone does an empirical analysis, unless I get magically good at statistics. Otherwise, there are plenty of theoretical micro-organizational issues, and employment law/employment benefits/ERISA issues for me.
Of course, my interest is academic and theoretical. I always manage to turn everything interseting and "real-world" into something largely useless and esoteric. But TD actually works in this world, and he follows such things as they directly affect his industry. We talked about this over dinner the other night, arguing about who is in the best position to insure against loss: the corporation, or its employees? Whose behavior do we want to affect/regulate/incentivize through legal mandates or economic incentives? But then we had a movie to watch, and the dog to walk, and now he's out of town, (at some work thing with a BSC banker!), and then I'm going out of town (on Friday, for a week to Washington D.C, say hello) and so the discussion is paused. Well, it continues by email. So here's a bunch of links I collected from the blawg side (I do think we have the best analysis) for him:
- Why the Fed had to Bail Out Bear Stearns (Slate)
- Gordon Smith on Bear Stearns' Employees (The Conglomerate)
- Paul Secunda: Bear Stearns' Employees Should Have Diversified (Workplace Prof Blog)
- Bear Stearns' Stock Price (The Conglomerate)
- Larry Ribstein on Bear Stearns' Fiduciary Duties (Ideoblog)
- Actual merger agreement (M&A Blog)
- Jeff Lipshaw on a whole range of issues (Concurring Opinions)
- Jack Balkin on what this means for the Unitary Executive (Balkinization)
- Dave Hoffman on a bunch of stuff (Concurring Opinions)
- Matt Bodie on Shareholder homogenity (PrawfsBlawg)
- Jeff Lipshaw's very good post on why we should all care about corporate law (Concurring Opinions)
This will strike a little dagger into Paul Gowder's heart (as he thinks corporate law is "boring"), but may discussions of the complex legal, economic and public policy issues in the Bear Stearns' debacle bring closer together you and the one you love.